As the sun beamed down on New York’s Roy Wilkins Park at the close of July, revelers soaked in its rays and the relentless music and vibes of sound system entertainment, the cornerstone of Jamaican music and culture!
The world’s biggest promoters of sound system entertainment, Irish and Chin, staged an unforgettable and energetic music festival that featured the who’s who of the sound industry on Sunday, July 30 in Queens, New York. The only event of its kind and caliber in the United States, “Sound Fest Vibez in the Park” flawlessly recreated the vibes of open air/lawn dances and parties in Jamaica, which the masses crave.
The nostalgic event not only commemorated the milestone 20th Anniversary of Irish and Chin, but also celebrated sound system culture and served as a new, viable platform for the amazing talents of sounds to be showcased. From the infectious sounds of Reggae and Dancehall music bolting from the colossal speakers curated by the witty, skilled and entertaining selectors and sound systems to the cane man, juice man, delectable Caribbean food and much more, a complete cultural and memorable time was experienced by all in attendance.
“Our success comes from the passion we have to see sound system culture grow,” says Garfield “Chin” Bourne of Irish and Chin. “We truly believe in the power of the craft and embrace all aspects of the culture. I have really enjoyed doing something I love the last 20 years of my life and seeing our visions for sound system culture come to fruition.”
From start to finish, the massive audience erupted into cheers, yells and of course incessant horn blowing as their favorite sounds beat (played) big tunes that connected with them. Whether it was the music of late great artists, customs and dub plates or modern day anthems, selectors and sounds creatively brought the tunes to life.
While ALL talent booked for the 2nd Annual “Sound Fest Vibez in the Park” delivered great performances, there were most definitely stand out showings from the popular sounds and cohort of legendary artists.
By all means, crowd response and overall audience buzz were centered on the performances of Rory Stone Love, Banky Hype, Blunt Posse, Soul Supreme, Platinum Kids, Killamanjaro, Bodyguard, Mighty Crown, Rennaisance, Josey Wales and the Sound Chat Radio x Irie Jam Radio clash. Magnitude of music selections and great chemistry with the audience were winning ingredients for what proved to be a zesty recipe for sound system entertainment.
The spectacular finale of Mighty Crown and Rennaisance was definitely one for the books. During the ultimate show closer, the fellow brethren and sound men went one for one, dropping scorchers and crowd favorites! Next year, the promoters promise bigger and better!